Eurogroup wants Troika to review Cyprus' "Plan B"

Brussels, Mar 21 (EFE).- Finance ministers from the euro zone nations said Thursday they are ready to look at an alternative proposal from Cyprus to resolve that country's financial crisis, but insisted the plan must be reviewed by the Troika.

"The Eurogroup stands ready to discuss with the Cypriot authorities a draft new proposal, which it expects the Cyprus authorities to present as rapidly as possible," Eurogroup President Jeroen Dijsselbloem said after a conference call with the ministers.

"(S)ubsequently, on the basis of a Troika analysis that needs to be undertaken," Dijsselbloem said, the Eurogroup "would be prepared to continue negotiations on an adjustment program, while respecting the parameters defined earlier by the Eurogroup."

The Troika - the European Commission, International Monetary Fund and European Central Bank - has played the leading role in determining responses to the wave of debt crises in the euro zone.

The Eurogroup's initial plan for rescuing Cyprus's troubled banks included a one-time levy on bank deposits in the island nation, but Cypriot lawmakers rejected that idea.

Since the rejection, the Eurogroup has accepted the idea that accounts smaller than 100,000 euros ($129,000) should be exempt from the levy.

"The Euro area member states continue to stand ready to assist the Cypriot people in their reform efforts and stand ready to ensure the stability of the euro area as a whole," Dijsselbloem said Thursday.

Cyprus' government reached agreement last weekend with the Troika on imposing the bank-deposit tax to partially cover the cost of a bailout of up to 10 billion euros ($13 billion).

The Eurogroup insists that Cyprus contribute 5.8 billion euros toward that total.